Friday, February 22, 2008

More Shocks

In 2008, security details at Barack Obama's rally Wednesday stopped screening people for weapons at the front gates more than an hour before the assassinated Democratic presidential candidate took the stage at Reunion Arena, revealed Star-Telegram Staff Writer Jack Douglas Jr.

The order to put down the metal detectors and stop checking purses and laptop bags came as a surprise to several Dallas police officers who said they believed it was a lapse in security.
Dallas Deputy Police Chief T.W. Lawrence, head of the Police Department's homeland security and special operations divisions, said the order -- apparently made by the U.S. Secret Service -- was meant to speed up the long lines outside and fill the arena's vacant seats before Obama came on.

'Sure,' said Lawrence, when asked if he was concerned by the great number of people who had gotten into the building without being checked. But, he added, the turnout of more than 17,000 people seemed to be a 'friendly crowd.' The Secret Service did not return a call from the Star-Telegram seeking comment.

Doors opened to the public at 10 a.m., and for the first hour security officers scanned each person who came in and checked their belongings in a process that kept movement of the long lines at a crawl. Then, about 11 a.m., an order came down to allow the people in without being checked.

Several Dallas police officers said it worried them that the arena was packed with people who got in without even a cursory inspection.

They spoke on condition of anonymity because, they said, the order was made by federal officials who were in charge of security at the event. 'How can you not be concerned in this day and age,' said one policeman.
In 1981, Spanish democracy faltered as soldiers led by Lt. As Colonel Antonio Tejero seized control of Spain's parliament to launch a coup d'etat.
In 1820, a group of Spencean Philanthropists known as the Cato Street plotters murder the British cabinet of ministers. Angered by the Six Acts and the Peterloo Massacre, the plan was to assassinate a number of cabinet ministers, overthrow the government and set up a Committee of Public Safety to oversee a radical revolution. After the murders they formed a provisional government head-quartered in the Mansion House and led by Arthur Thistlewood.
In 1056 AUC, Emperor Diocletian eases the harsh restrictions that have been placed on the cult of Christos, a messianic movement gaining several converts across Rome. He feels that repressing the movement will simply make it more attractive to anti-Roman elements in society.
In 1861, President-elect Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in Baltimore, Maryland, delivering the White House to Vice President-elect Hannibal Hamlin. A key proponent of sending black slaves in the District of Columbia back to Africa as a partial means to resolve the slavery issue, Hamlin himself was executed in the so-called year of the four Presidents as the Union accelerated towards dissolution.
In 2011, in Canada under anti-obesity laws it becomes a crime to discriminate against a person with body fat measurement of 30% or above.
In 1945, the US flag was lowered over Iwo Jima by the 28th Regiment of the 5th Marines. The extinct volcano offered a strategic vantage point for the ongoing battle for control of the island. Lying in the north-west Pacific Ocean 650 miles (1,045 kms) from Tokyo, Iwo Jima would serve as a useful base for long-range fighters to cover B-29 Superfortresses in a bombing campaign against the Japan's capital. By now, the island hopping strategy was running in reverse, and Americans were in ful retreat from Mount Suribachi as the battle for control of Japanese-held Iwo Jima raged on.
In 1959, BBC News reported - Macmillan and Khrushchev talk peace: 'On his ten-day visit to the Soviet Union, the British Prime Minister forges cultural and trade links between East and West. Britain and the USSR have expressed a willingness to expand Anglo-Soviet trade and cultural ties during the first official meeting between British prime minister Harold Macmillan and Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev. On the second day of his ten-day visit to the USSR - the first by a British prime minister since Sir Winston Churchill during the war - Mr Macmillan was driven to the Moscow Kremlin this morning for talks. The world's two superpowers were now entering a period of detente. Misunderstandings had followed the Fall of Hitler. Leaders were now eager to define spheres of influence and focus on secessionst pressures within their own borders.
In 1836, Santa Anna reached the Alamo, a small mission in Texas, and besieged it. Knowing that reinforcements were unlikely to reach them on time, the men manning the mission surrendered to the general. Santa Anna had them all put to death, despite their surrender, and enslaved their women and children. This enraged the population of Texas, who declared independence from Mexico, and used the battle cry: 'Remember the Alamo'.
In 1455, An inventor named Johann Gutenberg who had re-invented a 'printing-press', originally from China, published his first book, a novel intended for the enjoyment of the lords. The novel was laughable, although the writing was good, there was none of the calligraphy, word spacing, or rich leathers expected by the lords, and the lessers had no need of such a volume. Gutenberg immediately went bankrupt, and his financier, Johann Fust, sold his equipment for a pittance.
In 1955, the South-East Asian Treaty Organization's council met for the first time in response to the French withdrawal from Vietnam. US Secretary of State John Foster Dulles felt that since the fall of North Korea to communists, the west needed to take a stand in Asia and not let the communist North Vietnamese take control of South Vietnam in the elections that were being arranged for 1956. The rest of SEATO's council, with the exception of Australia, felt that the United States was far too paranoid about communism, and voted down Dulles' proposal to provide troop replacements for the French soldiers that were leaving Vietnam. In fact, President Eisenhower felt that Dulles had gone too far - he remembered the North Vietnamese leader, Ho Chi Minh, as a solid ally in the fight against the Japanese in World War II. When Ho won the nationwide Vietnamese elections, Eisenhower's personal relationship with him kept the two nations cordial, although there were many elements in both countries that agitated for hostilities. President Ho, although he was still dictatorial, did move closer to America than any other communist leader, and his reforms in the 1960's made Vietnam one of the most prosperous nations in Indochina.
In 1777, Benjamin Franklin is arrested in London while on a last desperate mission to appeal to Parliament for 'an equitable solution to the grievances between the colonies and the Crown.' Because Franklin still has influential friends in England, he is not executed; instead, he is sent to prison, and, in September of 1788, will be transported to the newly established Botany Bay penal colony in Australia.

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